Everything About Heart Disease - Symptoms, Types & Treatment

By Linda Mondry November 15, 2019 in Health

Heart disease is a term that is associated with any disorder or improper functioning of the heart.

Being one of the most essential organs of the body, still many people do not understand the importance of taking care of it, as a result of which deaths due to one or another heart disease are increasing rapidly throughout the world.

The risk of developing heart disease can be controlled by learning everything about heart disease, like the  symptoms, types, treatments and even implementing heart-healthy lifestyle approaches.

In this guide, you will learn about types of heart disease, their associated symptoms, and several treatments, which will help you in preventing this deadly disease by adopting healthy lifestyle habits.

Table of Contents

  • Types of Heart Disease
    • Coronary heart disease (CHD)
    • Arrhythmia
    • Heart valve disease
    • Heart failure
    • Pericardial Disease
  • Symptoms of Heart Disease
    • Symptoms of Coronary heart disease (CHD)
    • Symptoms of Arrhythmia
    • Symptoms of Heart valve disease
    • Symptoms of Heart failure
    • Symptoms of Pericardial Disease
    • Symptoms of Heart Attack
  • Treatment of Heart Disease
    • Lifestyle Changes
    • Medications
    • Surgery and other procedures

Heart Disease – Symptoms, Types & Treatment

Heart Disease

Types of Heart Disease

Heart disease covers a broad range of cardiovascular issues which are becoming the leading cause of death.

There are different types of heart disease, where some are congenital which occurs in people born with heart problems, while some occur over the course of time due to one or another reason. 

The common types of heart disease include:

Coronary heart disease (CHD)

Coronary heart disease is one of the most common heart diseases, it is also known as Coronary artery disease.

This type of heart disease occurs when plaque develops on the walls of coronary arteries and results in the low blood flow to the muscles of your heart.

Coronary heart disease can also cause a heart attack.

Angina is the common symptom that leads to CHD, in which a victim experiences a pain that feels like a pressure in the chest, and other parts of the upper body.

You feel more Angina pain with activity and feel relieved after taking rest, moreover, emotional stress can also cause angina.

The factors that increase the risk of CHD include high-LDL or low-HDL cholesterol, high blood pressure, smoking, CHD family history, postmenopausal, obesity, and others.

Arrhythmia

Arrhythmia is one of the types of heart disease that describes irregular heartbeat.

It causes either too fast or too slow heartbeat, which results to a wide range of symptoms.

The victim experiences a fluttering feeling in the chest or feels like his/her heart is skipping a beat.

If you experience a similar feeling anytime, make sure to consult your doctor immediately for further examination.

Heart Valve Disease

A heart has four valves that work together to ensure the proper pumping and flow of blood.

When any valve stops working accurately, it results in the heart valve disease.

This type of heart disease occurs due to stenosis, thickening of valve flaps, leakage of valve, blood flow back to the heart, atresia, congenital nonappearance of a valve opening and others.

The signs and symptoms of heart valve disease include a heart murmur, fatigue, swelling in feet and legs, breath shortness and raised neck veins.

Heart Disease

Heart Failure

Heart failure does not mean that the heart is unable to perform its functions.

Actually, heart failure is a condition in which the capacity of your heart’s pumping is not enough to provide the required blood and oxygen to the body.

The heart failure is actually the weakening of heart muscle and is associated with other conditions such as CHD, history of heart attack, unrestrained hypertension, congenital heart disease, and even anomalous heart valves.

Symptoms of heart failure include breathe shortness, fatigue, raised neck veins and building fluid at lower parts of the body.

Pericardial Disease

The pericardium is a sac that exists around the heart and any disease of this sac is known as pericardial disease.

The common disease is the inflammation of the pericardium, also termed as pericarditis.

The main causes of pericardial disease are the infection due to a virus and other inflammatory diseases like lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and even injury to the pericardium.

The main treatment of this type of heart disease is open heart surgery.

Symptoms of Heart Disease

The symptoms of heart disease depend on the type of condition you have.

The common symptoms include:

  • Chest pain
  • Breath shortness
  • Heart palpitations

Now, let’s have a look at the symptoms associated with a particular type of heart disease.

Symptoms of Coronary heart disease (CHD)

  • Chest pain or angina
  • Discomfort, heaviness, burning or squeezing in the chest
  • Breathe shortness
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Sweating

Symptoms of Arrhythmia

  • Fluttering in the chest
  • Pounding in the chest
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Breath shortness
  • Discomfort in the chest
  • Weakness
  • Fatigue

Symptoms of Heart valve disease

  • Breathe shortness during any activity or when lying on the bed.
  • Weakness
  • Discomfort, pressure and burning sensation in the chest
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Swelling in feet, ankles, and abdomen
  • Quick weight gain

Symptoms of Heart failure

  • Breathe shortness when performing any activity
  • Cough with white sputum
  • Speedily weight gain
  • Swelling in legs, feet, ankles, and abdomen
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Irregular heartbeats 
  • Nausea
  • Chest pain

Symptoms of Pericardial Disease

  • Sharp chest pain in the center of the chest and may get worse when lying down.
  • Coughing
  • Low fever
  • Increasing heart rate

Symptoms of Heart Attack

  • Pain from chest to neck, arms, back or even jaw
  • Fullness or choking feeling
  • Profuse Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Anxiety
  • Breath shortness
  • Fast or irregular heartbeats

If you feel you have chest pain with other symptoms mentioned above, immediately call your doctor.

Always keep in mind that immediate treatment of heart disease causes less damage to your heart.

Treatment of Heart Disease

The main aim of treating heart disease is to improve the quantity and quality of the patient’s life.

Prevention is always recommended when it comes to maintaining heart health and optimizing heart disease treatment.

Once plaque starts forming, it is possible to control its development by following a healthy lifestyle, eating a healthy diet, and taking all precautions to prevent or limit high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes.

Heart Disease

Treatment of heart disease comes under three categories, which include

  1. Lifestyle changes
  2. Medications
  3. Surgery and other procedures

Lifestyle Changes

A healthy lifestyle is a first and main step towards preventing or treating heart disease.

If you make a few changes in your lifestyle, it helps greatly in treating the heart condition and preventing it from getting worse.

So, make sure to eat a heart-healthy diet i.e. low-fat diet which is rich in fruits and vegetables.

Avoid fried, junk and over-processed food, which these days, most people usually depend on due to their busy daily routine.

Quitting smoking, tobacco, and alcohol is another change you must incorporate into your life.

Getting regular exercise also helps in preventing/treating heart disease.

Medications

Lifestyle changes alone are not sufficient, the medications are prescribed to cure or control the heart condition.

A variety of medications are available in the market to treat the majority of heart diseases.

Many medications are recommended to prevent blood clots, while some are prescribed based on your heart condition.

Some of the medications for heart disease are:

  • Statins, for lowering cholesterol level
  • Warfarin, for preventing blood clots
  • Beta-blockers, for treating hypertension and heart failure
  • Antiarrhythmic, for treating abnormal heartbeats
  • Clot buster, for breaking blood clots
  • Nitrates, for treating angina in CHD
  • Digoxin, for treating weak heart to work efficiently

Surgery and other procedures

In severe cases, the only treatment left for a heart condition is surgery or other medical procedure that work effectively in the prevention of getting symptoms worse.

The type of surgery or medical procedure performs completely depends on the type of heart disease you have as well as the existing condition of your heart.

Some of these procedures include:

Conclusion

Hopefully, this guide will help you a lot in understanding the significance of a healthy heart.

However, it is always important to take care of your overall health, before any kind of diagnosis is made.

If you have a family history of heart disease, it increases the risk of heart problems to you.

So, take care of it and enjoy your life to the fullest without any health issues.

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Linda Mondry

9 articles by Linda Mondry | View Author Profile

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